NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 9, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 9, 2020

Golden Knights down the Stars to tie the Western Conference Final, the latest on Mathew Barzal and Kevin Shattenkirk, the dates for the draft and free agency are adjusted, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Vegas Golden Knights blanked the Dallas Stars 3-0 to even the 2020 Western Conference Final at a game apiece. Robin Lehner turned in a 24-save shutout while Paul Stastny had a goal and an assist. Game 3 is Thursday, Sept. 10 at 8 pm ET.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights took control of the game in the second period with three goals as they outshot the Stars 19-7. If not for Dallas goalie Anton Khudobin it would’ve been a more lopsided result. The Stars made things worse for themselves by taking six penalties, resulting in William Karlsson’s power-play goal that put Vegas up 2-0.

NEW YORK POST: Islanders center Mathew Barzal has matured as a player during his club’s postseason run. He played a crucial role in eliminating the Philadelphia Flyers with two goals and four assists in that seven-game series.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Barzal sits third among Islanders scorers with 14 points, but it’s his all-around play that’s garnering attention in this postseason.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk has nine points in this postseason, sitting second among Bolts blueliners behind Victor Hedman. Five of those points came in the last two games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Shattenkirk downplayed his recent production but he’s been quite effective for the Lightning in these playoffs. All but one of those points came at even strength.

TSN: The 2020 NHL Draft is slated for Oct. 6-7. The free-agent market opens on Oct. 9 at noon ET.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s shaping up to be a busy, interesting October.

NORTHJERSEY.COM: The Devils have hired Mark Recchi as an assistant coach.

SPORTSNET: Calgary’s Dampy Brar is the winner of the Willie O’Ree Community Hero Award, presented to the individual “who best utilizes hockey as a platform to help people build character and develop important life skills for a more positive family experience.” Brar, who played minor pro in the IHL and West Coach Hockey League, now coaches and mentors youth, and co-founded the APNA Hockey program.

Where Are They Now? 2006 Carolina Hurricanes

Where Are They Now? 2006 Carolina Hurricanes


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 12, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 12, 2017

Calgary Flames captain Mark Giordano honored for his charity work.

Latest on Mark Giordano, Jaromir Jagr and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

CALGARY SUN: Flames captain Mark Giordano won ESPN’s Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian Award for his charity work. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Well deserved recognition of Giordano’s good works away from the ice. 

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: If unrestricted free agent Jaromir Jagr fails to land with a new NHL team, the ECHL’s Florida Everblades would love to sign him. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Jagr can’t find an NHL contract, I believe he could opt to finish his playing career in Europe. 

ARIZONA SPORTS: The Coyotes hired former Pittsburgh Penguins assistant coach Rick Tocchet as their new head coach. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: The Penguins replaced Tocchet with Mark Recchi. 

EDMONTON SUN: The New York Islanders hired Kelly Buchberger as their new assistant coach. 

CSNPHILLY.COM: The Philadelphia Flyers re-signed center Scott Laughton to a two-year, $1.925 million contract.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS:  The Stars re-signed forward Gemel Smith to a one-year, two-way contract. 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 27, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 27, 2017

Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2017.

Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2017 unveiled, Golden Knights trade Methot to Stars, the latest notable contract signings & more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: Former NHL stars Teemu Selanne, Paul Kariya, Mark Recchi and Dave Andreychuk headline the 2017 inductees into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Joining them are retired women’s hockey player Danielle Goyette, University of Alberta coach Clare Drake and Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs. The induction ceremony takes place in Toronto on November 13, 2017.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to the Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2017. 

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: The Dallas Stars last night acquired defenseman Marc Methot from the Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for goaltender Dylan Ferguson and a second-round pick in 2020. Methot was selected by the Golden Knights from the Ottawa Senators during last Wednesday’s NHL expansion draft. The Stars also placed goaltender Antti Niemi on waivers for buyout purposes and re-signed defenseman Esa Lindell to a two-year, $4.4 million contract extension. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Good move by the Stars to bolster their blue line depth. Methot is an experienced stay-at-home defenseman with leadership skills. He should prove an invaluable addition to the Stars youthful blueline corps. No surprise Niemi was bought out. The writing was on the wall for him when the Stars acquired and signed Ben Bishop last month. 

EDMONTON SUN: The Oilers re-signed forward Zack Kassian to a three-year deal worth $1.95 million annually. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning re-signed defenseman Andrej Sustr to a one-year, $1.95 million deal. 

CSN MID-ATLANTIC: The Washington Capitals re-signed forward Brett Connolly to a two-year deal worth $1.5 million per season.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER:  The Carolina Hurricanes re-signed forward Derek Ryan to a one-year, $1.425 million contract. 

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators re-signed winger Tom Pyatt to a two-year, $2.2 million deal. 

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks re-signed backup goaltender Anton Forsberg to a two-year deal worth $750K per season and forward Tomas Jurco to a one-year, $800K contract. 

THE BUFFALO NEWS: The Sabres re-signed defenseman Taylor Fedun to a two-year deal worth $650K annually. 

TWINCITIES.COM: The Minnesota Wild re-signed defenseman Gustav Olofsson to a two-year, $1.45 million deal. 

NHL.COM: The deadline for NHL teams to extend qualifying offers to their players was 5 pm ET on Monday. Among the notables who didn’t receive offers were St. Louis Blues winger and 2012 first-overall draft pick Nail Yakupov, Calgary Flames winger Alex Chiasson, Colorado Avalanche forward Mikhail Grigorenko, Montreal Canadiens defenseman Nikita Nesterov and New Jersey Devils winger Beau Bennett, 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 24, 2016

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 24, 2016

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin celebrates one of his three goals against the St. Louis Blues.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin celebrates one of his three goals against the St. Louis Blues.

Game recaps plus injury, expansion and World Cup of Hockey updates in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM:  Alex Ovechkin tallied his first hat trick of the season to lead the Washington Capitals to a 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues. It was the 16th time in Ovechkin’s career he’s tallied three goals in a game. 

Sidney Crosby scored twice and set up another to power the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 6-1 rout of the New York Rangers. 

Milan Lucic scored a goal and set up three others while Connor McDavid netted a goal and two assists as the Edmonton Oilers defeated the Colorado Avalanche 6-3. 

Mike Cammalleri had a four-point night (one goal, three assists) to rally the New Jersey Devils to a 5-4 shootout win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Cammalleri missed the Devils’ previous six games as his daughter underwent surgery for pneumonia.  Leafs rookie Auston Matthews snapped a 13-game goal drought, scoring twice and setting up another. 

Bo Horvat and Sven Baertschi each tallied a goal and two assists while Ryan Miller made 35 saves to give the Vancouver Canucks a 4-1 victory over the Arizona Coyotes. 

Martin Jones made 33 saves as the San Jose Sharks edged the Chicago Blackhawks 2-1. The Hawks also lost captain Jonathan Toews to an upper-body injury and is uncertain for their next game. 

Filip Forsberg, James Neal and Ryan Johansen each had a goal and an assist to lead the Nashville Predators to a 5-2 win over the Dallas Stars. 

Third-period goals 12 seconds apart by Alex Killorn and Ryan Callahan led the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 4-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Earlier in the day, the Flyers learned center Sean Couturier will be sidelined four-to-six weeks with a left-knee injury. 

A shootout goal by Thomas Vanek lifted the Detroit Red Wings to a 2-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres. 

The Minnesota Wild beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-1, handing the latter their fourth straight loss. 

Chad Johnson made 34 saves backstopping the Calgary Flames to a 2-0 shutout over the Columbus Blue Jackets. 

Derek Forbort tallied the game winner as the Los Angeles Kings doubled up the New York Islanders 4-2. 

CSNNE.COM: Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara (lower-body injury) will miss tonight’s game against the Ottawa Senators and is doubtful for tomorrow’s contest against the Calgary Flames. 

NBC SPORTS: Montreal Canadiens defenseman Nathan Beaulieu was released from hospital yesterday after taking a puck to the throat in Tuesday’s game against the Ottawa Senators. However, he’s been ruled out of tonight’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes and is doubtful for Saturday’s game against Detroit. 

THE NEWS & OBSERVER:  Carolina Hurricanes winger Bryan Bickell is taking things day by day coping with multiple sclerosis. The disease has put his playing career in jeopardy. He’s been in touch with former Minnesota Wild goalie Josh Harding, whose career was ended by MS. 

THE HOCKEY NEWS: The World Cup of Hockey wasn’t the massive cash cow the NHL and NHLPA hoped it would be. A total profit of less than $40 million is significantly lower than projected, perhaps by as much as 50 percent. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: While the tournament was more entertaining that expected, it failed to generate excitement among hockey fans accustomed to watching NHL players in Olympic competition. The TV numbers in Canada were solid, but much less so in the United States, though Team USA’s early elimination certainly didn’t help. 

SPORTSNET:  Vegas Golden Knights owner Bill Foley reputed reports that several notable athletes and celebrities owned minority stakes in the franchise. “The [NHL] goes through a process for every investor…so at this point, there are no minority investors [connected with the organization],” Foley said. “We have talked to the league about bringing in minority investors [but potential investors] haven’t really applied yet. I’d rather not mention names.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Turns out former NHL player turned Pittsburgh Penguins development coach Mark Recchi briefly owned a tiny stake in the Golden Knights. He had to divest it, however, to avoid being in a conflict of interest. 

ASSOCIATED PRESS (VIA OTTAWA SUN): NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly disputed the notion this season’s condensed schedule is leading to a rise in injuries. NHLPA spokesman Jonathan Weatherdon said it was too early in the season to draws conclusions with respect to the number of injuries through this point in the season. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES:  The Lightning will replace the cell phone of a Nashville Predators fan damaged by Lightning forward J.T. Brown. 

Do Trade Deadline Deals Aid Stanley Cup Contenders?

It’s widely-accepted around the NHL that a playoff contender can improve its chances of advancing the Stanley Cup Final by acquiring talent at the trade deadline. There’s several notable examples where such moves have achieved this goal.

Butch Goring become the first notable trade-deadline acquisition to help a team win the Stanley Cup.

Butch Goring become the first notable trade-deadline acquisition to help a team win the Stanley Cup.

The first is the New York Islanders acquiring underrated two-way forward Butch Goring in 1980 from the Los Angeles Kings. Goring helped the Isles achieve a dynasty of four straight Cup championships, earning the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1981. That trade didn’t actually occur on deadline day, which was March 11 that year, but the day prior. Still it’s considered a notable trade deadline acquisition.

Another is the Pittsburgh Penguins picking up Ron Francis and Ulf Samuelsson at the 1991 deadline. The duo helped the Penguins win the Cup that year and again in 1992. Like the Goring trade, this deal actually took place one day ahead of the deadline, which that year was March 5.

The Colorado Avalanche’s acquisition of Ray Bourque from the Boston Bruins in 2000 is often cited among these examples. However, Bourque wasn’t acquired at the deadline, but over a week earlier (March 6) than the March 14 deadline. The Avalanche didn’t reach the Cup Final that year, but he did play a key role in their championship  run the following season.

Three recent examples of deadline deals helping teams reach the Final include the Pittsburgh Penguins dealing for Marian Hossa in 2008, plus the Los Angeles Kings trading for Marian Gaborik in 2014 and the New York Rangers’ acquisition of Martin St. Louis in the same year.

Sometimes acquisitions can have more far-reaching effects, like the Tampa Bay Lightning acquiring first- and third-round picks in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft. Those picks became Vincent Lecavalier and Brad Richards, who helped carry the Lightning to the Stanley Cup title in 2004.

Yet when one thinks of trade deadline deals, it’s the immediate impact upon a team’s chances to win the Cup that year.

Using NHLTradeTracker.com, I examined the notable deals made since the introduction of the trade deadline in 1979-80 to see how many deals made on – or immediately prior to – deadline day actually played a significant role in helping a team at least reach the Stanley Cup Final.

Despite the Goring deal in 1980, it took some time before playoff contenders made serious moves at the trade deadline to bolster their rosters.

It was six years following the Goring trade before another team made a deadline move which helped them reach the Cup Final. That was the 1986 Calgary Flames, acquiring John Tonelli from the New York Islanders. Tonnelli tallied 16 points in 22 games during the ’86 playoffs.

In 1988, the Boston Bruins shipped Geoff Courtnall and Bill Ranford to the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for goaltender Andy Moog. Backstopped by Moog, the Bruins reached the ’88 Stanley Cup Final, where they fell in four straight games to the Oilers. Two years later, the two clubs would meet again, with Moog and Ranford the starting goalies as the Oilers defeated the Bruins in five games.

Three years passed before another notable deadline trade took place. That was the Penguins acquisitions of Francis and Samuelsson in 1991 noted earlier in this piece.

In 1994 the Vancouver Canucks dealt Craig Janney to the St. Louis Blues for depth players Jeff Brown, Bret Hedican and Nathan Lafayette. Meanwhile, the New York Rangers shipped Tony Amonte to the Chicago Blackhawks for depth players Stephane Matteau and Brian Noonan. They also traded Mike Gartner to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Glenn Anderson, and dealt Todd Marchant to Edmonton for Craig MacTavish. These deals played significant roles in the Canucks and Rangers reaching the Stanley Cup Final, in which the Rangers emerged triumphant in seven games.

By this point, there was a significant increase in trade activity near the trade deadline as playoff contenders began making last-minute tweaks to their lineups.

In 1996 the Detroit Red Wings dealt defenseman Dan McGillis to the Edmonton Oilers for checking forward Kirk Maltby. Though he didn’t help the Wings to a championship that year, he would go on to become part of four championship teams in Detroit.

Deadline acquisition Larry Murphy helped the Red Wings win two Stanley Cups.

Deadline acquisition Larry Murphy helped the Red Wings win two Stanley Cups.

The following year saw the Red Wings make one of the biggest steals in trade deadline history, acquiring supposedly washed-up veteran defenseman Larry Murphy from the Toronto Maple Leafs for future considerations. Murphy helped the Wings win back-to-back championships in 1997 and 1998.

The Red Wings acquired another all-star defenseman in 1999, prying Chris Chelios out of Chicago. While it didn’t pay immediate dividends, Chelios would eventually go on to win two championships with the Wings in 2002 and 2008.

It was around this time that a growing number of deadline trades involved non-playoff clubs shipping potential free agents to playoff contenders for draft picks while fewer actual hockey trades (player-for-player) took place. It’s a trend which continues to this day.

In 2000, the New Jersey Devils shipped Brendan Morrison and Denis Pederson to the Vancouver Canucks for winger Alexander Mogilny. Thanks in part to Mogilny’s 16 points in 25 playoff games, the Devils skated to their second Stanley Cup title.

Two years later, the New Jersey Devils shipped Jason Arnott, Randy McKay and a draft pick to the Dallas Stars for forwards Joe Nieuwendyk and Jamie Langenbrunner. While the deal didn’t help the Devils win the Cup that year, it played a significant role in their championship run the following season.

The Anaheim then-Mighty Ducks made a couple of depth acquisitions at the 2003 deadline in forwards Rob Niedermayer and Steve Thomas. They helped the Ducks reach the ’03 Cup Final.

In 2006, the Carolina Hurricanes acquired Mark Recchi from the Pittsburgh Penguins, while the Edmonton Oilers made a deal with the Boston Bruins for Sergei Samsonov. Both players helped their respective new clubs reach the Cup Final that year, with the Hurricanes emerging victorious.

The Pittsburgh Penguins made the biggest splash of the 2008 deadline by acquiring Marian Hossa from the Atlanta Thrashers, who as noted earlier in this piece helped them reach the Stanley Cup Final. They also acquired Pascal Dupuis in that trade, who not only helped the Penguins reach the Final that year but also win the Cup in 2009. He remains with the Pens to this day.

During the ’08 deadline, the Detroit Red Wings shipped a draft pick to the Los Angeles Kings for defenseman Brad Stuart. He helped the Wings win the Cup in 2008 and return to the Final in 2009.

The Penguins were at it again in 2009, acquiring Bill Guerin and Craig Adams. This duo helped the Penguins win the Cup in their Final rematch later that spring with the Red Wings.

Jeff Carter helped the Kings win two championships in three years.

Jeff Carter helped the Los Angeles Kings win two championships in three years.

Four days before the 2012 deadline, the Los Angeles Kings shipped defenseman Jack Johnson to Columbus for forward Jeff Carter, who not only played a key role in their Cup championship that year, but also in their second title run in 2014. He remains one of the Kings top players. Three days before that same deadline, the New Jersey Devils acquire defenseman Marek Zidlicky from the Minnesota Wild, who played a part in their run to the 2012 Cup Final.

At the 2013 deadline, the Bruins acquired Jaromir Jagr from the Dallas Stars. The day prior, the Blackhawks made a minor pickup in center Michael Handzus. Both players helped their new clubs reach the Cup Final, with Handzus’ Blackhawks lifting the big mug in triumph.

Looking at these notable deals throughout the history of the trade deadline, it’s no wonder so many playoff contenders attempt to bolster their rosters in hopes of achieving playoff success. These successful trades, however, make up just a small part of the hundreds of trades over the past 35 years.

The overwhelming majority of deals made during the NHL trade deadline by playoff contenders simply don’t work out. There’s no guarantee that a deadline acquisition will have an immediate positive effect upon a playoff roster. Given how most deals since the late-1990s involve pending free agents, few had significant long-term impact.

That won’t stop the general managers of playoff contenders from swinging deadline deals, be it gambling big on a star player or making small moves to shore up depth. More often than not, however, many of them are panning for treasure but ending up with fool’s gold.